Citrus Butter Garlic Chicken and Asparagus

This is a yummy one skillet meal that we made on our Facebook Live cooking show tonight!  You can see that recipe video here! 

I love this because it is fast and easy and doesnt dirty up ten pots and pans!  You can make this after work in less than 20 minutes!

Here are the ingredients!

Ingredients:

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts butterflied if thick.

1 bundle of thin asparagus

1 fresh naval orange

3 tbsp olive oil

3 tbsp grass fed butter

6 cloves of fresh garlic

salt and pepper to taste

 

Break ends off asparagus to desired length.  Cut orange into four quarters.  Heat the oil and butter in a large skillet.  Add the garlic to the skillet and take the knife and pop each clove to release flavor as seen in the video before adding to pan.  Add asparagus to one side of skillet and the 2 chicken breasts to the other.  Tilt pan and baste asparagus as well as the chicken breasts.  Sear each side of the chicken.  Add salt and pepper to chicken and vegetables and squeeze the juice of one quarter of the orange on chicken and one quarter on the asparagus.  Cook chicken until juices run clear turning over every couple of minutes.  Keep basting with the juices in the pan. Be sure not to overcook the chicken as it will dry out and be tough.  Just before plating, squeeze the other two pieces of orange onto the chicken and veggies and serve!

This is a great meal with a nice salad on the side!

Enjoy!

XOXO

Erin and Ben

 

LOW CARB CHICKEN ENCHILADAS

We cooked these yummy enchiladas tonight on our Facebook live that you can watch HERE!

The use of a rotisserie chicken is great in a time crunch, but of course you can always grill or bake or boil your own chicken breasts or thighs and use that!

INGREDIENTS

2tbsp Olive oil
1 precooked Rotisserie chicken
2 teaspoons cumin
1tablespoon garlic powder
1 red onion chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup Shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup Shredded mozzarella cheese
8 La Banderita carb counter tortillas (or Mission low carb )

Enchilada sauce ingredients (far less sugar than store bought)
1 8oz can Great Value tomato sauce (this brand is low sugar)
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste

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Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray a 9×13 pan with cooking spray

Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a small saucepan on medium heat. Stir periodically and reduce down to desired thickness. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Debone the chicken and heat in a skillet on medium heat. Stir in the cumin, garlic powder, red onion, and salt and pepper to taste.
Divide the chicken mixture among 8 tortillas. Sprinkle with cheddar and roll them up and place in the baking dish.
Finally cover the top of the enchiladas with sauce and add a topping of cheddar and mozzarella cheese. Place in the oven for 15 minutes. Use the broiler for the last few minutes to brown the top!

Serve with a nice salad loaded with veggies!

 

ENJOY!

Erin and Ben!

Low Carb Stuffed Bell Peppers

We made these delicious gems on our weekly cooking Facebook LIVE called “Let’s Get Cookin!” You can feed six people for literally less than $10!!!  This is a great blend of protein and fiber and veggies for a perfect meal.  We usually serve this with a nice salad!

Here are the ingredients!

6 Bell peppers
1 pound ground turkey
1 package frozen cauliflower rice
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon Tony’s Cajun seasoning
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Slice the tops from the peppers and remove the insides including the seeds.

Place the peppers in a baking dish you have sprayed with cooking spray.

Brown the ground turkey in a skillet adding Tony’s, salt and pepper to taste. Be sure to season well since we are using turkey.

In a bowl combine the cooked turkey, (do not drain) cauliflower rice, onion, garlic and Parmesan cheese.

Divide mixture equally among the six peppers. Sprinkle additional Parmesan on top if desired!27652882_10155214985910983_1470771764_o

Place the baking dish in the oven and set a timer for 30 minutes. Check for internal temperature of 165 degrees. Add time if necessary for softer peppers

ENJOY!!!

In Health!

XOXO

Erin and Chef Ben

Do You Eat Enough Plants?

We all grew up with parents and teachers advocating that we should be eating fruit and vegetables 5 times a day. However, in this world of processed boxed foods, we see the term fruit or vegetable more often than not slapped on an item that really shouldn’t be considered a fruit or vegetable serving. Many of us are consuming extremely boxed and processed versions of real food that they are considering to be fruits or veggies.  In adulthood, and in the midst of a crazy busy life, we often forget that which we learned as a child. Few people doubt that fruits and vegetables are a good source of vitamins and nutrients, but does that mean that we are eating enough of them?

Consensus differs amongst academics regarding specific quantities, but the most up to date recommendations on this subject would advocate that an adult eat five servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit every day. That might sound like a lot, but when you break it down it really shouldn’t be considered all that much. In fact, it should be a basic standard. The bottom line is that we need to eat more plants. This is actually a hashtag I use a lot on Instagram on my nutritionist account.   God gave us fruits and vegetables for a reason.  Their colors are not just to look pretty- they represent different nutrients we need to keep our bodies strong. #eatmoreplants

When considering breakfast, many people will stick to that which they know. This often involves toast, cereal or even nothing more than a cup of coffee. Whether breakfast is or is not the most important meal of the day may be debatable, but there is no doubt that a good breakfast sets your body up for the day ahead. Very few people consider vegetables and low sugar fruits like berries  for their breakfast, when they should be stapes instead of the starchy and sugary choices. Switching a bowl of cereal (that turns to pure sugar once consumed) for a veggie omelette and a bowl of berries could make a huge difference in your overall health and in how you feel the rest of the day.  This type of breakfast will help keep you full and keep your blood sugar level for the rest of the day.  A breakfast of carbs and sugar sets you up for a day of tired and cranky and more hungry.

Lunch is a great time to load up on vegetables. Again, all too often people repeat the same mistake that they make at breakfast time. Deli made sandwiches and rolls may taste nice, but they are packed full of carbs and calories, which turn to sugar, and are often severely lacking in proper servings of vegetables. Swapping the sandwich for a homemade salad can be the perfect way to work on an imbalance you may have in your diet. Vegetables also make for ideal snacks. Ditch the packet of popcorn, the cookies or the fizzy drink you have to keep you going between lunch and dinner and swap it for raw veggies and hummus or apples and peanut butter. Always look for ways to take out carbs and sugar and processed items and replace with plants.

These are all small changes you can make to your diet, but these small changes can do wonders for your health, and your waistline. Vegetables should be at the core of our daily dietary intake, and yet they are all too often forgotten about for their more attractive carb-cousins. Ask yourself this; are you eating 5 servings of veg and 2 of low-sugar fruit every day? If not, make today the day all of that changes!

In Health!

XOXO

Erin

 

 

 

7 Low Carb Fiber Sources

Ah fiber, we hear so much chatter about it on a daily basis, yet many of us fail to get enough in our diets.  One of the FIRST things I tell my nutrition clients in their quest to be healthier is to eat more fiber. Especially since the main source is PLANTS!  We all need to add more plants to our diets.

Unfortunately, a lot of us have not been informed about what fiber does, or why you should be getting more. Is this you? NO worries!  I am going to change that today!

A Few Benefits of Adding More Fiber To Your Diet

  • Helps Control Cholesterol Levels – fiber comes in two types, soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is able to bind to bile acids, which are then excreted. When bile acid levels are lowered, cholesterol is used up to replace the diminished supply of this essential digestive substance. This is a wonderful benefit for those who struggle with high bad cholesterol levels.  Many are able to come off the not-so-good-for-you cholesterol meds when they make dietary changes and add good gut health supplements to their daily regimen.
  • Helps Control Blood Sugar Levels – a diet high in fiber slows down the rate at which sugar enters the blood stream. The result is a more sustained entry of glucose into the body, along with accompanying insulin regulation. Getting more fiber is extremely important for my friends with diabetes or who have had any type of weight loss surgery.
  • Helps Maintain Regularity – if you experience occasional constipation, (hello bariatric friends) you are most likely deficient in fiber intake as well as unbalanced in the gut. Fiber is able to retain water, making stool easier to pass. Fiber helps to move the waste and ick and bacteria killed off by things like Pro Bio 5 OUT of the digestive tract. It is such a crucial piece of the gut health puzzle.  For those who take any type of iron supplement- fiber and magnesium like that in Bio Cleanse are VERY helpful in keeping the body regular.

 

  • May Help With Weight Loss – fiber helps with weight loss thanks to one simple fact; it keeps you fuller for a longer time! As long as glucose is slowly trickling into your blood, along with fiber absorbing fluids and bulking up, you are likely to eat less.

Ready to add some ridiculously simple fiber sources to your diet?

Here are some of the best sources of low carb fiber you can add today to get your body functioning better.

Flax Seeds

There are almost no carbs in flaxseeds because they contain so much fiber, and both soluble and insoluble varieties, with 1/3 being soluble. SONY DSC

Flax may just be the best low carb fiber sources, with 1 tablespoon yielding only 2 grams of carbs and 1.9 of which is fiber.

You can use whole or ground, whichever you prefer.  I love adding them to salads, soups, shakes, and also to things like stir fry and other veggie dishes.  When Ben makes his meatloaf, either beef, pork, or turkey, we always add a few spoonful’s of ground flax seed.

Avocados

A highly nutrient dense fruit, the avocado’s health benefits are plentiful. While it has 9 grams of carbs, 7 of those are fiber, which nets only 2 impact carbs and ideal for a low carb lifestyle.

Additionally, the avocado contains 2 grams of protein and 15 grams of healthy fats, both of which are essential for a healthy low carb body.

Key Nutrients In Just A 3.5 Ounce Serving Include:

  • 26% RDA of vitamin K
  • 20% RDA of folate
  • 17% RDA of vitamin C
  • 14% RDA of potassium
  • 14% RDA of vitamin B5
  • 13% RDA of vitamin B6
  • 10% RDA of vitamin E

Avocados also have more potassium than bananas, a nutrient that helps to assist with many vital internal body processes. A 3.5-ounce serving contains 14% of the RDA of potassium. This is a great swap for that banana after a workout for those trying to watch the carbs!

Several studies found that potassium intake helps to reduce blood pressure and lower risks for heart attack and strokes.

If that’s not enough, avocado also contains manganese, copper, magnesium, zinc, iron, vitamins B2 and B3, phosphorous and vitamin A.

Broccoli

Broccoli is amazing not just for its fiber level but also for its ridiculously low caloric density.

½ a cup of broccoli has only 31 calories, 2 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of carbs, bulking up stomach contents without a large carb or caloric load.

It also supplies a lot of vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin B-6.

Spinach and Chard

1 cup of chopped spinach has 1 carb and 1 gram fiber, so now carbs at all, and the same goes for chard! YUM!

Asparagus

½ a cup of cut cooked asparagus has 4 grams of carbs and 2 grams fiber.

Celery

1 cup of chopped celery has 3 grams of carbs and 2 grams of fiber.

Mushrooms

1 cup of sliced mushrooms has 2 gram of carbs and 1 gram of fiber.

As you can clearly see, there are a LOT of low carb, nutrient-dense choices for adding fiber to your daily routine!  Experiment and try new things and you just might be amazed at what you actually enjoy!

In Health!

XOXO

Erin

 

 

 

Why every weight loss surgery patient should look into Plexus supplements…

I have been getting asked a LOT lately how Plexus fits into my life as someone who had gastric bypass back in January of 2009.  First- a little background.  At the time of my surgery I was an almost 350 lb food addict who thought that the surgery was the quick and magical fix I had been searching for.  I really thought that once I had the surgery, I would never again be able to eat more than a few bites at a time and my obesity issues would be solved forever.  BIG MYTH.  BIG LIE.

This was all before any of my nutritional training and education and before I went back to school to become a dietitian.  This was when I thought sugar-free Oreos were healthy. Basically I just didn’t get it and didn’t fully understand the long term effects this surgery would have on my life. I also didn’t understand at that time that I was a bonafide food addict.  Since then, I have been to therapy for food addiction (which is really carbohydrate addiction, but that is another blog in and of itself) and had years of education on nutrition and health and have come to realize something that will make some weight loss surgery patients nod their heads in agreement and some shake their heads in disbelief and denial.  If you have had to resort to weight loss surgery, then you have an addiction.  It really is okay to admit.  There are many factors leading up to this realization that include genetics, personal choice, environment, and the food industry itself and what they do to our food supply to make us crave the boxed and packaged and processed junk out there.  I tell you this with zero judgement and only a desire to help.  I think therapy should be mandatory for anyone who has weight loss surgery because the surgery fixes the belly temporarily but does not fix the head.

So with that being said, lets chat about why Plexus is such a great tool for bariatric patients.  Bariatric patients really need the Tri Plex, Block, and X factor vitamin at the bare minimum.  I am about to show you why. But first, here is a little video all about the Tri Plex combo.

  1. The honeymoon is over. We all know that there is that magical year or so after weight loss surgery, not so much with LapBand, where no matter what we do we will lose weight.  After this period is over, the tummy is stretched a bit and things change a lot. This is why it is so critical to make permanent habit changes during the honeymoon phase or else many end up regaining much if not all of what was lost.  Introducing the Tri Plex during this phase is a BIG HELP in breaking bad habits.  The Tri Plex and Block will keep that appetite under control and help cut the cravings for carbs and sugar and help you stick to the low carb lifestyle that is required to keep the weight off for good.
  2.  Blood sugar.  Many post-op bariatric patients can have terrible sugar crashes that can be not only bothersome but also dangerous.  Our Slim drink helps support healthy glucose metabolism and is a must for me daily.
  3. Deficiencies in things like B-12. For most bariatric patients there is a lifelong issue with the absorption of nutrients.  Two of the most common deficiencies are iron and B12 and everyone is told when they have surgery to expect to take vitamins for the rest of their lives.  I used to have B12 shots every two weeks and my levels never really got to where they needed to be.  The X Factor Vitamin from Plexus has aloe blend and New Zealand Black Currant which may improve absorption and assimilation for optimal nutrition for wellness protection. *   I have not needed a B12 shot in three years. Several of our products contain B12 and finally my levels are perfect as of my last labs.
  4. Tummy issues. Many people who have had bariatric surgery can find themselves feeling a little “backed up” or the opposite and finding themselves going a little too often.  This is where Bio Cleanse comes in handy.  Bio Cleanse helps naturally speed up the removal of unhealthy microbes and substances and helps support your body’s natural detoxification process.* It also has Vitamin C which we all need.  It helps keep the digestive tract clean and helps relieve gas and bloating and occasional constipation.* It has magnesium which is also a very important mineral for our bodies.
  5. Gut bacteria. Keeping the bacteria in the gut healthy is a big piece of the puzzle with weight loss surgery.  Pro Bio 5 is an amazing 5 in 1 probiotic with enzyme support.  We eat a lot of protein and fiber as part of a low carb lifestyle.   Pro Bio 5 contains an enzyme that aids in the breakdown of proteins and fibrous foods. * Pro Bio 5 also promotes Colon health and reduces bloating and discomfort.*
  6. Appetite control. Tri Plex and Block make for some amazing appetite control.*  Block also has fiber and prevents up to 48% of the carbs you eat from being converted to glucose and stored as fat.*  This is wonderful for people with blood sugar issues also.*  This is how Block works.

 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  These products are not intended to treat or cure any disease.

The bottom line is that we ALL need to keep our gut healthy and create an optimal environment for weight loss, but for someone who has had weight loss surgery, the need is even greater.  This is why we have so many bariatric nurses and doctors who use Plexus.  It is one tool I cannot imagine living without!  Feel free to email me if you have any questions.  sugarfreehealthylife@gmail.com

XOXO

Erin